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Warangal: Candidates jittery over result of municipal polls

Warangal: Candidates jittery over result of municipal polls
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Even though, the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) is oozing with confidence to continue their winning spree, a majority of contestants belonging...

Warangal: Even though, the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) is oozing with confidence to continue their winning spree, a majority of contestants belonging to other parties including the independents seem to be banking on Lady Luck to scrape through the elections to urban local bodies (ULBs). After all, it's a matter of a few hundred votes that can tilt the balance irrespective of the party affiliation of the candidate.

Ahead of the Saturday's counting, the contestants looked jittery. They have been going through the data of voting pattern. "It's not all that easy to presume that all those people, who had reposed their faith in the TRS in the 2018 Assembly, Gram Panchayat and Parishad elections, had voted for the ruling party again in this municipal polls," BJP leader and Damera Sarpanch G Sriram Reddy told The Hans India.

"It's not a herculean task for the candidates to make a headcount of the voters who voted for them as they were well aware of the households in their wards and their political affiliations," a senior TRS leader said. There are as many as 814 candidates in the fray for the 182 wards across nine ULBs in the erstwhile Warangal district that went to polls on Wednesday (January 22).

It may be mentioned here that of the total 200 wards, TRS candidates had already picked up 18 wards unopposed. Compared to previous elections, the voting percentage in four ULBs is less while the other five have recorded an increased voter turnout.

Of the nine ULBs, Wardhannapet recorded highest poll turnout with 88.63 per cent. It witnessed 13 per cent increase in voter turnout. Voters in Bhupalpally didn't show much enthusiasm as they turned to polling booths in trickle, recording a voter turnout of 63.37 per cent. With nearly 5 per cent, Parkal municipality witnessed a significant increase in voter turnout. It may be mentioned here that the TRS had already clinched 11 of the 22 wards unanimously.

The voting percentile in Jangaon was also up by 1.54 per cent, compared to previous election in 2014. So was in Maripeda and Dornakal. They increased 4.8 per cent and 6.7 per cent respectively. It may be mentioned here that both the ULBs were upgraded from Gram Panchayat status. On the other hand, Thorrur ULB which hitherto was a Gram Panchayat witnessed a drop in voter turnout.

As many as 16 per cent voters didn't turn to polling stations compared to last election. The voting percentage in Mahabubabad witnessed 0.43 per cent, a slight increase. Meanwhile, the authorities made elaborate arrangements for the counting of votes on Saturday. The counting of votes will start at 8 am.

By and large, the results would be out by afternoon, according to officials. On the other hand, some leaders of the TRS and Congress are in contact with the other party candidates and independents as a precautionary measure to clinch the municipalities. It's speculated that parties to rush their candidates to camps as soon as the results are announced so that to avoid poaching from opponents.

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